When people say, “breakfast is the most important meal of the day,” they aren’t kidding! Multiple studies have shown that children and adults who consume breakfast are more energetic and have healthier body weights than those who don’t.
Breakfast can be more exciting than cereal or eggs or toast, but doesn’t necessarily have to take longer to prepare. An easy way to switch it up? Increase the variety of color! A perfect way to add in fruits and vegetables (even if your child doesn’t like them), is to add finely chopped onions, peppers, tomatoes, or broccoli to scrambled eggs. Whole grain cereals and oatmeal go perfectly with berries, dried fruit or nuts. Of course, be mindful of choking risk if your child is younger than 3 years old.
What do you do if you’re in a real rush? Make smoothies ahead of time! Smoothies are a great way to incorporate fruits, and even vegetables, into a quick and nutritious meal. Berries, melons, citrus fruits, bananas and other similar fruits work well. Use fresh, frozen or canned (in juice, not syrups). Add plain or lightly sweetened yogurt for additional creaminess and bone-building calcium. If you’re feeling daring, try sneaking in a few leaves of spinach or kale, which likely won’t change the taste or appearance of the smoothie, but add important immune nutrients like vitamin A and C. Smoothies can be prepared ahead of time and frozen in perfect portions. To defrost, just take them from the freezer and place them in the refrigerator in the morning or the night before. An added bonus? Let your kids help you choose the ingredients and prepare the smoothies — they’ll think they’re getting dessert for breakfast!
And for mornings where you do have time for some hands on cooking, here are some recipe ideas from Chop Chop Magazine that your kids will enjoy helping you prepare:
- One-eyed Jack: This old-fashioned breakfast goes by lots of names: egg-in-a-basket, egg-in-a-hole, gashouse egg, and bull’s-eye egg, among others. But whatever you call it, it’s a fun and filling way to start your day.
- Muesli: Muesli is a traditional Swiss breakfast of milk-soaked oats and fruit. There’s a fresh-tasting chewiness when you make oats like this, and they’re a nice change of pace from cooked oatmeal, especially when the weather’s warm.
- One-ingredient banana ice cream: Who says you can’t have ice cream for breakfast? Making this recipe is like doing a magic trick: whir up plain frozen bananas and end up with a creamy, dreamy ice cream. You have to try it to believe it!
- Egg quesadilla: This yummy breakfast dish is like a cross between a grilled cheese sandwich and a scrambled egg—and it’s packed with protein to energize you for your school day.
- Berry bold banana smoothie: Smoothies are fun to make for breakfast and snacks. You can use any fruit you like, but this version is pretty perfect, so check it out! Be sure to use bananas that are mushy and a little brown to give the smoothie a smooth texture.
- Blueberry smoothie: Blueberries are amazing brain food. Just half a cup a day keeps your brain cells healthy and your memory strong. Plus, blueberries are quite literally bursting with antioxidants.
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